Dakota County property owners work with the District Courts and the Dakota County Sheriff's Office during the eviction process.
Starting the eviction process
Plaintiff/property owners must file an eviction action with the District Court to remove a defendant/tenant from a rental property. Court forms to begin this process can be found on the Minnesota Judicial Branch website.
Minnesota Statutes Chapter 504B regulates these actions. The Minnesota Attorney General's Office also has information.
When a complaint has been filed, the District Court will establish a court date, issue a summons, and provide the plaintiff/property owner with enough copies of the summons and complaint to serve each defendant/tenant.
Serving court papers
The Dakota County Sheriff's Office Civil Unit can serve the defendant/tenant. The original summons, plus copies of the summons and complaint for each defendant/tenant should be delivered to the Dakota County Sheriff's Office Civil Unit at the Law Enforcement Center as soon as the plaintiff receives them.
Advance fees are required. Please contact the Sheriff's Office at 651-438-4780 for those amounts.
The deputy will complete the appropriate affidavits and the original summons and affidavit will be filed with the District Court by the Sheriff's Office.
If courts rule for the plaintiff/property owner
If the courts rule for the plaintiff/property owner, a Writ of Recovery will be authorized. This is an order for the Sheriff to restore the premises to the plaintiff/property owner.
The plaintiff/property owner must deliver the original Writ of Recovery to the Dakota County Sheriff's Office Civil Unit, along with advance fees of $125 for service. The Writ is valid for only 30 days.
A deputy will serve the Writ of Recovery on the defendant/tenant if they are home, or post it on a door of the premises. In either case, the defendant/tenant will be provided a notice stating that they can be removed by the Sheriff after 24 hours has elapsed.
If defendant/tenant vacates
There is no need to contact the Sheriff.
If defendant/tenant fails to vacate
If the defendant/tenant fails to vacate the premises, the plaintiff/property owner must contact the Dakota County Sheriff's Office Civil Unit, at 651-438-4780 to schedule an eviction.
Defendant/plaintiff property storage considerations
Onsite storage for 28 days
During scheduled evictions, deputies will remove the defendant/tenant and stand by until the plaintiff/property owner has completed an inventory of the premises. If the defendant/tenant wants to recover their property, they must contact the plaintiff/property owner within 28 days and make arrangements to pick it up. The plaintiff/property owner must release the property to the defendant/tenant. It is recommended, but not required, that recovery of property be handled on a single time/date basis. After 28 days, if the defendant has not picked up the property, it is considered abandoned.
Contract with a licensed and bonded mover to inventory and remove the property
The plaintiff/property owner must make arrangements to have the mover there at the time of the eviction. Deputies will remove the defendant/tenant and stand by until the moving company has loaded the property and completed an inventory. The plaintiff/property owner has a lien for the moving and storage expenses only. The defendant/tenant again has 60 days to contact the plaintiff/property owner to make arrangements to pick up the property, and may be required to pay the moving costs before it is released. Frequently, the value of the personal property is less than the moving expenses. Since the plaintiff/property owner is responsible for paying the movers, this option is selected less often.